The R. F. Byrnes Russian East European Institute (REEI) has received a $600,000 grant from the Carnegie Corporation of New York (CCNY) to fund new and ongoing opportunities for development of Russian Studies at Indiana University. This award maintains CCNY’s support of REEI initiatives, a collaboration which began with the establishment of the Russian Studies Workshop (RSW) under the auspices of REEI in 2016. Arising from a need to reinvigorate interest in Russian Studies at US institutions following the end of the Cold War, the initial $1 million grant enabled RSW to become a hub of collaborative opportunities for Russianists in the United States, Russia, and Europe. RSW’s early successes led to a second grant of $700,000 from CCNY in 2019-2021. “With CCNY’s support, the RSW has become an effective platform for international cooperation in Russian Studies that bridges social sciences and humanities,” said Tatiana Saburova, RSW Academic Co-Director.
Since its inception, RSW has played a critical role in
- Development of research clusters—cross-disciplinary teams that organize research, training and public activities
- Institutional partnerships that connect scholars across national and disciplinary borders
- Expansion of IU curricular offerings to elevate student enrollment in Russia-centered courses
- Funding of research opportunities and conferences for visiting scholars, students, and faculty
RSW’s future development centers on expansion and sustainability. This final grant phase will enable the RSW to enrich IU Russian Studies by means of a tenure-track faculty hire as well as further development of research clusters and institutional relationships with other CCNY-funded programs, in particular the Wisconsin-Russia project at University of Wisconsin-Madison. As the RSW broadens the strength of IU in Russian Studies, plans are taking shape to ensure its future. According to REEI Director Sarah Phillips, REEI is looking for additional support options to enhance RSW’s long-term security: “We are building a sustainable program that will live long beyond the tenure of the generous Carnegie grants.”